â€œPaediatric ophthalmology is a sub-speciality of ophthalmology concerned with eye diseases, visual development, and vision care in childrenâ€ said Dr Jyoti Acharya (MS. Ophthalmology, FPOS) a consultant in Paediatric Ophthalmology at Mure Memorial Hospital (MMH).
Speaking to The Live Nagpur, Dr Jyoti explained the significance of Paediatric ophthalmologists. â€œPaediatric ophthalmologists focus on the development of the visual system and the various diseases that disrupt visual development in childrenâ€ she said.
â€œPaediatric ophthalmologists have expertise in managing the various ocular diseases that affect children and are qualified to perform complex eye surgery as well as to manage children’s eye problems using glasses and medicationsâ€ she explained.
Dr Jyoti said â€œapart from regular eye surgeries I deal with childhood eye problems. We are trained in finding solutions related to vision problems in children even though they cannot express themselvesâ€.
Children experience a variety of eye problems, many quite distinct from adult eye diseases. Paediatric ophthalmologists are specially trained to manage the problems.
â€œAs a part of government programme MMH organizes special eye screening camps for children in schools to address the rising problems related to eye among children at an early ageâ€ she said.
â€œDuring our training we are taught a technique called Retinoscopy (Ret) to obtain an objective measurement of the refractive error of a patient’s eyes. In this, we use Retinoscope to shine light into the patient’s eye and observes the reflection (reflex) off the patient’s retina. While moving the streak or spot of light across the pupil the examiner observes the relative movement of the reflex to â€œneutralizeâ€ the reflexâ€ she explained.
Apart from this, there are many children who suffer from congenital cataract she said.
â€œCongenital cataract is a clouding of the lens of the eye that is present at birth. The lens of the eye is normally clear. It focuses light that comes into the eye onto the retina. Depending on the density and location of the opacification, congenital cataracts may need to be removed by cataract surgery while the child is still an infant to enable normal vision development and prevent amblyopia and even blindnessâ€ Dr Jyoti said.
â€œIt is also found that many children suffer from Lazy eye (Amblyopia). We have to identify such children and treat them as well. In this reduced vision in one eye caused by abnormal visual development early in lifeâ€.
With timely supervision and treatment it can be treated by patching therapyâ€ she added.
â€œAnother common problem which is seen among children and adult is Nearsightedness (Myopia). It occurs when the shape of your eye causes light rays to bend (refract) incorrectly, focusing images in front of your retina instead of on your retinaâ€.
Dr Jyoti added that â€œby the year 2050 Myopia will be a major problem as we are going towards Myopia pandemicâ€.
â€œWe have to assume that every other child will be myopic and have to take measures as soon as possibleâ€ she added.
Breaking the myth she said that many believe that if they use reading glasses regularly their vision will improve with time but this is not true we can only delay the process but not prevent it from happeningâ€.
MMH has new high-tech machines, fully functional equipment, Operation Theater used in eye check-up and eye surgery.
MMH has a team of specialized doctors, nurses, and medical staff with high-end technological machinery used in operation and treatment.
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